Jeremiah 22
Contemporary English Version

The Lord Will Punish the King of Judah

1-3The Lord sent me to the palace of the king of Judah to speak to the king, his officials, and everyone else who was there. The Lord told me to say:

I am the Lord, so pay attention! You have been allowing people to cheat, rob, and take advantage of widows, orphans, and foreigners who live here. Innocent people have become victims of injustice, and some of them have even been killed. But now I command you to do what is right and see that justice is done. Rescue everyone who has suffered from injustice.

4If you obey me, the kings from David's family will continue to rule Judah from this palace. They and their officials will ride in and out on their horses or in their chariots. 5 But if you ignore me, I promise in my own name that this palace will lie in ruins. 6Listen to what I think about it:

The palace of Judah's king

is as glorious as Gilead

or Lebanon's highest peaks.

But it will be as empty

as a ghost-town

when I'm through with it.

7I'll send troops to tear it apart,

and its beautiful cedar beams

will be used for firewood.

8People from different nations will pass by and ask, “Why did the Lord do this to such a great city as Jerusalem?” 9Others will answer, “It's because the people worshiped foreign gods and broke the agreement that the Lord their God had made with them.”

King Jehoahaz

The Lord said:

10King Josiah is dead,

so don't mourn for him.+

Instead, mourn for his son

King Jehoahaz,

dragged off to another country,+

never to return.

11-12 Jehoahaz+ became king of Judah after his father King Josiah died. But Jehoahaz was taken as a prisoner to a foreign country. Now I, the Lord, promise that he will die there without ever seeing his own land again.

King Jehoiakim

The Lord told me to say:

* 13King Jehoiakim,+ you are doomed!

You built a palace

with large rooms upstairs.

14You put in big windows

and used cedar paneling

and red paint.

But you were unfair

and forced the builders to work

without pay.

* 15More cedar in your palace

doesn't make you a better king

than your father Josiah.

He always did right—

he gave justice to the poor

and was honest.

16That's what it means

to truly know me.

So he lived a comfortable life

and always had enough

to eat and drink.

17But all you think about

is how to cheat

or abuse or murder

some innocent victim.

18 Jehoiakim, no one will mourn

at your funeral.

They won't turn to each other

and ask,

“Why did our great king

have to die?”

19You will be given a burial

fit for a donkey;

your body will be dragged

outside the city gates

and tossed in the dirt.

I, the Lord, have spoken.

King Jehoiachin and the People of Jerusalem

The Lord told me to say:

20People of Jerusalem,

the nations+ you trusted

have been crushed.

Go to Lebanon and weep;

cry in the land of Bashan

and in Moab.

21When times were good,

I warned you.

But you ignored me,

just as you have done

since Israel was young.

22Now you will be disgraced

because of your sins.

Your leaders will be swept away

by the wind,

and the nations you trusted

will be captured and dragged

to a foreign country.

23Those who live in the palace

paneled with cedar+

will groan with pain

like women giving birth.

24 King Jehoiachin,+ son of Jehoiakim,+ even if you were the ring I wear as the sign of my royal power, I would still pull you from my finger. 25I would hand you over to the enemy you fear, to King Nebuchadnezzar+ and his army, who want to kill you. 26You and your mother+ were born in Judah, but I will throw both of you into a foreign country, where you will die, 27longing to return home.

28Jehoiachin, you are unwanted

like a broken clay pot.

So you and your children

will be thrown into a country

you know nothing about.

29Land of Judah, I am the Lord.

Now listen to what I say!

30Erase the names

of Jehoiachin's children

from the royal records.

He is a complete failure,

and so none of them

will ever be king.

I, the Lord, have spoken.


22.10 King Josiah … him: The Hebrew text has “don't mourn for the dead one,” meaning King Josiah, who ruled 640–609 b.c.
22.10 his son King Jehoahaz … country: The Hebrew text has “the one who was dragged off to another country,” meaning King Jehoahaz, who ruled for three months in 609 b.c.
22.11,12 Jehoahaz: The Hebrew text has “Shallum,” another name for Jehoahaz.
22.13 Jehoiakim: See the note at 1.3.
22.20 nations: Or “gods.”
22.23 who live in the palace paneled with cedar: The Hebrew text has “who live in Lebanon and who nest among the cedars,” which probably means Forest Hall in the royal palace at Jerusalem, which was paneled with cedar and had cedar columns and a cedar ceiling, all from Lebanon (see 1 Kings 7.2,3).
22.24 Jehoiachin: The Hebrew text has “Coniah,” another form of Jehoiachin's name; he ruled for three months in 598 b.c.
22.24 Jehoiakim: See the note at 1.3.
22.25 Nebuchadnezzar: See the note at 21.2.
22.26 mother: See the note at 13.18.

Contemporary English Version, Second Edition (CEV®)

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